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Where Do the Candidates Stand on Health Care?

The new federal health care law allows states to establish exchanges to make insurance available to individuals and small businesses. Those who can’t get coverage through their jobs will be able to purchase any plan offered through an Exchange.

Opinions of Maine People

AARP commissioned a poll of Maine people in July/August 2010 to determine how much of a priority it should be for the next governor of Maine to improve the health care system so more Maine residents have access to affordable, high-quality health care in the state. AARP found that nearly three-quarters of Mainers (72%) feel that it should be a priority. More specifically, 39% believe it should be a top priority, while 33% believe it should be a high priority.

AARP’s Position

AARP believes Maine’s health insurance exchanges must select insurance products based on premiums charged, qualities of plans and their network of health care providers, and their commitment to reducing health disparities based on ethnicity and race. Also, Maine currently holds one of the nation’s lowest health insurance premium ceilings for seniors based solely on age. AARP supports protecting Maine’s current law rather than the weaker age protection enacted by the new federal health law.

Candidates’ Positions

AARP asked the Maine gubernatorial candidates the following questions regarding improvements to the health care system:

"Maine law currently limits discrimination in insurance premiums based on age, location, and work to prevent the highest rates from being more than 150% of the lowest rate. The new Federal Health Care Law allows variations of up to 300% based on age, but allows states to set lower rates. Do you support or oppose limiting age-based variations to 150%?"

See how each of the candidates for governor responded.

Find more information on AARP Maine’s voter education activities on Facebook or AARP.org and search for the election races in Maine.

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